First under 18 year old dies after contracting coronavirus in US

A Los Angeles resident is believed to be the first youth under the age of 18 to die after testing positive for coronavirus in the US.

No other details were given about the youngster’s age or if they had any underlying conditions, but they were from the Lancaster area, according to LA Public Health.

They are among 11 deaths reported in Los Angeles County in total, and more than 660 deaths across the US.

The disease is spreading, the surgeon general said, because many people are not following the guidance to stay at home.

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“Each loss we experience in LA County is tragic, and we are sending our heartfelt condolences to the families and loved ones who’ve had to endure this tragedy,” said LA County public health director Barbara Ferrer.

COVID-19 does not discriminate by age, race or income level, and what we are seeing in places like New York is indicative of what we should prepare to experience here.”

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Children are believed to be less at risk from COVID-19 than other age groups, although some health conditions can make patients more susceptible to becoming seriously ill.

During a White House press briefing on Monday, coronavirus response co-ordinator Dr Deborah Birx said: “In the mortality data that has been provided to us, there has been no child under 15 that has succumbed to the virus in Europe.

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“There was the one 14-year-old in China. So we still see that there is less severity in children, and so that should be reassuring to the mums and dads out there.”

Studies published previously say a 10-month-old baby and a 14-year-old boy died after contracting COVID-19.

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The baby had a pre-existing condition called intussusception, which is when the bowel walls press on one another, blocking the bowel.

The 10-month-old experienced multiple organ failure and died four weeks after being admitted to a hospital in Wuhan, China, according to research published in the New England Journal of Medicine last week.

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Coronavirus UK tracker: How many cases are in your area – updated daily

The vast majority of people in Britain who have died after contracting COVID-19 have been over 60.

An 18-year-old is believed to be the youngest person in the UK to have died from the virus.

The US child’s death comes as President Donald Trump said he is hoping the States would be reopened by Easter.

U.S. President Donald Trump addresses the coronavirus task force daily briefing as as National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Director Anthony Fauci listens at the White House in Washington, U.S., March 24, 2020. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
Image:President Donald Trump said he hopes the US will be reopened by Easter

“I would love to have the country opened up and just raring to go by Easter,” Mr Trump told a Fox News virtual town hall.

The president said he was already looking at easing guidance which has left schools shut, residents on lockdown and shops closed.

On Monday, the US saw its biggest jump yet in the death toll from the virus, with numbers growing by more than 100.

Mark Gibson

Graduates in Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois 1990. Move to Los Angeles California in 2004. Specialized in Internet journalism.

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